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Previously on TJ13:
OTD lite: 2008 – Ferrari engine failure gifts Hamilton title
Felipe Massa has never enjoyed much luck at the Hungaroring. His best finish over the years has been 4th and in 2009 the circuit almost claimed his life in an almost comedic fashion.
Rubens Barrichello’s Brawn had shed a spring and Massa happened to be in the wrong place at the wrong time, hitting it as he accelerated up to turn four. TV replays showed a Ferrari that didn’t seemingly have any input from the driver as it crashed into the barriers.It was only later that evidence was found for his head injuries as he was transported to hospital.
On this day, at the same event the previous year, Massa felt a different kind of despair after a quite brilliant display. Having qualified third behind title rival Lewis Hamilton, he took advantage of the clean side of the grid to vault past Hamilton’s team-mate Kovalainen and swept around the outside of Lewis into turn one. The race became a struggle between them both until Hamilton suffered a puncture leaving Massa clear of the field by twenty seconds.
Three laps from the end, Massa’s engine expired in candy floss clouds of smoke and severely dented his title aspirations. In Singapore, a glitch with the re-fuelling lights ripped the refuelling hose as he accelerated away. He would lose the title by one point and when people suggest Singapore and bad luck, Hamilton fans will suggest that he was punished in Belgium so it evens out. Which is ridiculous as Massa lost twenty against the four Lewis lost between 1st and third place finishes.
What should also be offered in calculations is that Massa’s placings in these lost Grand Prix wins would have been ahead of Lewis which would have meant the 2008 champion would have lost further points.
Australia confirms new Grand Prix contract for 2016-2020
The 2013 Aussie Grand Prix will always be remembered for the fact that the criminals that run the FIA disqualified the criminals known as Red Bull who ignored the technical directives about their faltering car drinking too much of the go faster juice.
Caught in the crossfire was perma tanned local boy, Daniel Riccardo – henceforth known as “The Colgate Kid’ or CK for short. I suggest perma tanned because 1) he’s an Aussie and 2) the brightness of enamel makes it impossible to tell properly.
In a world run by the mastermind known as Toad, it was always inevitable that Australia would sign up for further episodes of the circus – especially now that CK has established himself as a true contender having taken on and beaten equally young Sebastian Vettel.
This morning, the organisers of the Australian Grand Prix announced a new contract with FOM to host the Australian Grand Prix between 2016 and 2020.
Melbourne’s mayor Denis Napthine made the announcement: “With this agreement we hope to see Daniel Ricciardo triumph in the Australian GP and maybe even become world champion in Formula 1. Congratulations to Ron Walker, chairman of the Australian Grand Prix Corporation, for the success of this negotiation that allowed Victoria to snatch the best conditions.”
With CK having won two great races against the flood of Mercedes domination, Australia will be hoping that Master Newey’s last car for the Austrian Milton Keynes concern will give CK the chance of victory next year.
Lewis Hamilton is a fighter not an eater
Hamilton is headline news and there are times when the morally vacuous press get to him “Some of them are just bloody ill-mannered…why the hell don’t they come and badger me after I’ve won a f****** good race? Why don’t they badger me when I’ve done something good? They don’t want to know you when you are doing well or doing anything right. It is when you are in the s*** that they want to know. And that is what really upsets me about the British press.”
Which makes his candid openness with them alarming. Whilst the media savvy Alonso and Rosberg, for example, will deflect questions, Lewis almost stumbles into gifting them an answer which will be mis-quoted to sell copy.
Maybe Lewis could get a H.A.M. Shirt printed with, “Why always me” across the chest.
That Hamilton is a fighter is beyond doubt. Many of his victories have come against the odds in cars that really shouldn’t have been in the fight in the first place and as many times as there have been questionable performances, the yin to this yang is there have been times when he has been sublime.
Heading into the summer break, he took the opportunity to give an interview on his terms – revealing that the last couple of races have been damage limitation due to difficult circumstances throughout the weekend and, “Sometimes it’s nice to have things easy, but I love a challenge and a fight.It’s not the times of ease who show who you are -it’s the times of adversity. I definitely feel like the tough times I’ve had this year have made me stronger.”
As to his plans over the two week enforced leave that ‘most’ teams adhere to Lewis will be making the most of the break to relax physically and mentally after a demanding year. But his biggest motivation is to eat, although there’s no confirmation if it was roast dinners and Yorkshire pudding with family, big-ass burgers with Nicole and chums – or Ice Cream with the molten man Kimi.
“I feel like a stick at the moment and it’ll be nice to bulk up a bit. Since the removal of the FRIC system the car is a little lighter so I can put on a bit of weight and next year the weight limit will be going up by ten kilos too, so I’m thinking I can afford to put on a few pounds.”
Beyond those wishes of food, Lewis claims to be happy with performance of the car – which would be a trifle disingenuous when the accepted advantage the silver arrows carry is around two seconds a lap.
“We just need to work on reliability and I know that’s a priority for everyone back at the factories. Over the last two weekends the guys have been amazing – it’s tough for everyone when reliability comes into play – after the long hours and hard work they put in, it hurts them as much as it hurts me. To then fight through, get the car back together, get me out there and not give up or lose hope – I can’t thank them enough for everything they do.”
The final statement is intriguing in itself because a team insider revealed to TJ13 that following a factory tour by the drivers – after the recent British Grand Prix – Rosberg mingled and chatted with everyone, posing for photos and signing autographs. Hamilton, the previous day’s winner, was sullen and unapproachable.
It goes beyond Rosberg having been with the team for longer. Hamilton has been part of the Mercedes family since he was signed into a Mclaren contract as their engines powered the team. On previous visits in the early part of his career he was spoken of as “one of the nicest guys you could meet.” and yet something has changed..
Maybe it is simply the fact that he hasn’t been able to eat; have you seen how miserable people are when on diets?